Good times: SGR pushes domestic tourists to the Coast


More and more Kenyans are using the new standard gauge railway commuter services to visit the Coast.

According to the Kenya Coast Tourist Association (KCTA) Acting chairman, Victor Shitakah, the number of upcountry holidaymakers visiting the Coast, especially during weekends, has been on the rise, thanks to the SGR.

He encouraged more Kenyans to take advantage of the affordable train services to visit the region.

“We are in an election year, but this does not mean that we discard what we are doing. We hope that we shall conduct a peaceful election and allow Kenyans and visitors from outside our country to continue sampling the various attractions we have,” Shitakah, the CEO of Kenya Safari Lodges and Hotels and president of Skal Kenya Coast, said at the weekend.

August holidays

He lauded the Kenya Tourism Board (KTB) for vigorously marketing the country’s various tourism destinations.

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The hoteliers also appealed to Kenyans to take advantage of hotels’ promotional offers.

“We are appealing to Kenyans, especially in the coming August holidays, to take advantage of the SGR services and tour the coast,” the Severin Sea Lodge sales and marketing manager, Caroline Ndirangu, said.

The English Point sales account manager, Julia Karanja, said local visitors  account for 95 per cent of the total bed occupancy at the hotel. “We have witnessed positive increase in the number of the local tourists in our facility. We get a lot of transfers from the Mombasa Railways’ terminus at Miritini, mostly towards weekends,” she said.

The hoteliers made the remarks during the launch of the Mall Activation Promotion Services organised by KTB at the Nyali City Mall in Mombasa. The promotion targets domestic travellers ahead of the August holidays.

The KTB chief executive officer, Dr Betty Radier, said the programmes are aimed at spurring growth in the domestic tourism segment.

Domestic tourism last year recorded 14.6 per cent growth, with 3.6 million bed nights being taken up by domestic travellers, compared to 3.1 million in 2015.

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